SEO is required if you're going to last and it should inform the whole content process from idea to delivery.
Be clearly visible where and when customers are looking.
It's not enough anymore to just have an awesome website. People need to be able to find it.
Which means search engines, (*cough* Google *cough*), need to like it.
To rank at the top in results you don't need to have crazy keyword packing on all of your website's pages, (that helps, but don't over do it), you need to have credibility and provide relevant answers that provide value for those searching.
Search Engines are in the business of providing t̵h̵e̵ ̵r̵i̵g̵h̵t̵ the BEST answer. This means the most relevant answer to the person searching wins.
You don't have to shoot in the dark. Learn where your keyword gaps are, what your competitors rank for, and the questions people want answered.
Know the questions being asked, websites being visited, and how your customers are consuming information at each stage of the customer journey.
Now that we are equipped with all of this information, we can deploy specific, relevant, and targeted content directly to the brains of our customers!